Authorities in China are battling the country’s biggest-ever delta variant outbreak, forcing the introduction of tough quarantine measures in the northeastern city of Dalian, as the region reported 32 new cases in the previous 24 hours.
According to the Chinese National Health Commission, 32 new locally acquired cases were reported on Monday, of which 25 were in the domestic tourism hub of Dalian.
Monday’s tally brings the total number of new cases reported in the past 30-days above 1,300, which according to Reuters is higher than the 1,280 infections reported in China’s delta variant outbreak during the summer.
While several provinces have managed to contain their outbreaks with swift lockdown measures, Dalian continues to report more than 24 cases a day on average since the first week of November.
The growing outbreak in the tourist hub means that people arriving from the city to nearby regions now face a mandatory 14-day quarantine in a government facility.
2.38 billion. That’s the total number of Covid-19 vaccine doses administered in China, enough to cover more than 85% of its entire population, according to Reuters. However, questions have been raised about the efficacy of some Chinese-made vaccines and the country’s vaccine makers have not publicly shared any data on how effective their vaccines are against the delta variant.
Since the start of the pandemic in Wuhan in late 2019, China has reported 98,315 Covid-19 cases and 4,636 deaths. After the initial outbreak, the country’s authorities used stringent lockdown measures and large-scale testing to stomp out the local spread of the virus in the country. However, China’s zero-Covid approach has been challenged by sporadic Delta variant outbreaks in parts of the country. In September, the delta variant had sparked a major outbreak of new infections in China’s Fujian province. A month before, that the tourist hub of Zhangjiajie faced a delta outbreak that forced officials to briefly seal the city.
Last month, Beijing and some other regions in China began offering booster vaccine doses to anyone above the age of 18 who is part of an “at-risk” group which includes those who are participating, organizing, or working in the upcoming 2022 Winter Olympics in the capital. Others who are eligible for a booster shot include people working in retail, manufacturing, education and public facilities.